Why eDiscovery Software is the Perfect Solution for FOIA Requests

FOIA eDiscovery Software

Why eDiscovery Software is the Perfect Solution for FOIA Requests

Written by Jim Gill
Content Chief, Ipro

As far back as 2013, the Department of Justice has received over 70,000 Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests per year, and this trend continues to rise. By law, all federal agencies are required to respond to a FOIA request within 20 business days, unless there are “unusual circumstances.” If the requests don’t receive a response to according to law, the agency can be sanctioned, as well as those individual employees, “…who are found to have acted arbitrarily or capriciously in improperly withholding records. Additionally, the court must award attorney fees and other litigation costs against the government.”

This puts a lot of pressure on the FOIA personnel assigned to perform all duties related to the processing of these requests: logging, tracking, searching for responsive records, analyzing responsive records for disclosure pursuant to FOIA provisions, applying exemptions to the documents as appropriate, and communicating with the FOIA requestor. These tasks become all the more formidable when trying to manage them with manual processes and basic tools.

One example of this involves the FOIA administrator at one of the agencies within the Department of the Interior. Their old process was manually searching email, native files and images, opening each one individually in Outlook, changing the metadata, and then making the decision on whether the document was relevant to the FOIA request. They used an Excel workbook to catalog document names since there were no other Document IDs to use as a reference. Needless to say, this proved to be a very labor-intensive process, not to mention that the data was spoliated when changes were made to the file headings and any related metadata.

As an added challenge, if redactions were needed, the documents had to first be converted into PDFs and then redacted manually, using a program like Microsoft Word or Adobe. As Ryan Joyce, VP of Strategy at Ipro, shares, “Time and time again we have seen the same headline—a law firm or government agency warding off the trouble caused by not handling their redactions correctly. Why is this still an issue after all these years? In reality, any software can place a colored box over text, but only the right eDiscovery solution will provide the correct and federally mandated result.”

This is where eDiscovery solutions designed with the specific result of making life easier for FOIA personnel come into play.

The dilemmas listed above are easily solved by a single tool with the features listed below:

  • Quickly ingest and OCR a large variety of file types that may be a part of a public request
  • Advanced search tools allow the finding of relevant documents in a fraction of the time
  • View text and metadata at the same time, without spoliation
  • Near-duplicate detection and email threading eliminates the need to review similar documents
  • Reporting features easily log and track documents
  • Alerts prevent redaction errors and ensure DOJ-quality productions
  • Create multiple productions if variations of a FOIA request are required

It’s clear that the challenges of FOIA requests can be daunting, so creating awareness is critical: the right solution for Government Agencies already exists in eDiscovery software originally created for litigation purposes.

When you would like to learn more how Ipro eDiscovery solutions help Government Agencies
meet the challenges of FOIA requests, take a moment to visit us here.

Ipro Announces Legal Technology and Training Scholarships with TRU Staffing Partners

Ipro Scholarships TRU Staffing

Ipro Announces Legal Technology and Training Scholarships with TRU Staffing Partners

Ipro, a global leader in eDiscovery and Trial software technology, is pleased to announce the winners of two sponsored scholarships in partnership with TRU Staffing, an award-winning search firm representing talent and opportunities in cybersecurity, eDiscovery, and data privacy.

The winners — Cynthia Benavides of Miami, FL and Bonnie Brooks of Rochester, NY — will receive TrialDirector360 software for one year plus TrialDirector360 Certified Administrator training.

In total, there were 53 scholarship recipients of the 2020 TRU Staffing Partners Scholarship Program, which is designed to foster training and education for professionals in the security and legal technology industries. The 2020 portfolio of partners and their certification, training, and education delves into diverse areas of discipline including mobile forensic collection, advanced data analytics, legal project management, processing and hosting of litigation data, cyber incident response and remediation, privacy law and program building, technical eDiscovery attorney review expertise, and more!

TRU Staffing’s Scholarship Board consists of industry experts and thought leaders who came together to anonymously select the recipients for training in the legal community. Some of this year’s board members include:

  • John Rielly, Director Legal Support Services, Debevoise & Plimpton
  • Dan Torba, Head of E-Discovery Services US Region, Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer LLP
  • Martha Louks, Director of Technology Services, McDermott Will & Emery LLP
  • Brad Schaffel, Manager – eDiscovery & Litigation Support, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
  • Nicole Tineo, Litigation Support Manager, BakerHostetler
  • Conan Hines, Legal Technologist
  • Ian Balom, Manager, eDiscovery & Legal Technology, Herbert Smith Freehills New York LLP

Congratulations Cynthia and Bonnie on your scholarships and thank you TRU Staffing Partners for continuing to support this program.

To learn more about Ipro’s Software Administrator Training
Check out our new virtual course series!

New Survey Captures the Current Pulse of the eDiscovery Industry

survey pulse of eDiscovery Industry

*Editor’s Note: Over the past few weeks, as the eDiscovery industry was shifting to the new normal of remote work and shelter-in-place policies, Ipro’s Senior VP of Strategy, Ryan Joyce, set out to talk with and survey clients and others in the industry from around the world to hear their story and get a pulse on where things stand and where they seem to be heading. This is the result of his research.

The Current Pulse of the eDiscovery Industry
Written by Ryan Joyce, Senior VP of Strategy, Ipro

First, I created a short interview with 7 questions and sent them to corporate legal teams, law firms, and legal service providers in the United States, Canada, the UK, and Australia. The first question is about how they, their family, and their region were doing overall. The remaining 6 questions are about their company: if they are working from home, if they are busy and still getting new matters, and what their expectations are for the industry in 2 months, as well as for when things get back to “normal.”

Below are the 7 questions with my wrap-up summary for each. I’ve also included a few statements from some of the people I spoke to, with their names and company information removed for privacy.

Outside of work, what’s going on in your geographical area?

There is a very similar story emerging everywhere. Everyone is either social distancing on their own or being mandated by their local or federal governments. They are also getting used to the “new normal” of working from home, at home schooling for those with kids, and doing a dozen or more Zoom meetings per day. Streets are empty across the globe for the most part as everyone tries to stay safe and healthy (some countries and states are starting to hand out tickets and fines upwards of $1,000 or more for failing to do so).

Is everyone working from home?

At this point, the unanimous answer is yes. With that said, some organizations still have a few folks going into the office and some handled the process much better than others. Managed Document Review Centers and on-site collections have mostly gone remote as well.

Is your organization still busy?

Across the board, the answer is yes, everyone is still busy, and in some cases, even busier than usual. Document Review has spiked because attorneys now have the time with other operations currently on hold.

Are cases going on & are new ones starting?

Everyone is still working on a lot of projects, along with cases from Q4 and early Q1. And everyone is still receiving new matters, but the rate has slowed depending on the practice area. Some companies are already starting to see an uptick in the areas of Health Care, Bankruptcy, Corporate, Contracts, Force Majeure, COVID 19 Task Forces, and others.

Are cases still being heard in the courts?

At this point, the unanimous answer is No (or not really), at least for Civil cases. Criminal cases must still be heard due to a defendant’s right to a speedy trial. Depending on the country (or state), E-Courtroom Technology may be more available in some areas, and the Supreme Court of the US, as well as the Supreme Courts of Michigan and Florida, are beginning to hear virtual oral arguments. In an announcement on April 13, the nation’s highest court will open a live audio feed for the first time as it hears arguments in ten sets of cases.

What do you expect to see in the eDiscovery & Litigation Support arena 2 months from now?

Everyone I spoke with sees a slowdown over the next months. However, depending on the Practice Group, some could get very busy in the same time frame. Below are a few of the quotes from my conversations:

  • Things will continue to get worse; infection rates will continue to go up, people will have a harder time working, things will slow down. And if the courts continue to stay closed, then things will really slow down – we need to weather the storm and keep the ball moving and be resilient — Global Director of Forensics in UK (Top Global Service Provider)
  • Things will slow down, but it’s unclear for how long — Client Services Director in Los Angeles, CA (Top Global Service Provider)
  • We’re expecting a huge slow down if everything stays the same, because almost no new matters will be filled for construction — Director of eDiscovery in Houston, TX (Large Construction Litigation Law Firm)
  • There is a freeze on hiring until this is over. Cases will slow down on litigation trials until courts open back up. However, with our Bankruptcy and COVID 19 task force, we will stay busy — eDiscovery Services Manager NYC, NY (Am Law 50, Global Law Firm)
  • Hoping there will be growth in solvency restructuring, because that is our business, but expecting about 3 months of hardship at least — Partner Brisbane, Australia (Large Forensics & Cyber Security Accounting Firm)
  • No doubt things will slow down, because clients will slow down. The question for law firms will be, how do we use employees for billable hours, who aren’t normally working in those roles? The firms that can adjust, look at any avenue, move people here and there, those are the ones who will survive – Litigation Support Director, East Coast (Am Law 200, Law Firm)

When the dust settles and things get back to “normal,” what do you expect to see in the eDiscovery & Litigation Support arena (maybe 3 – 4 months from now)?

This one had mixed results. Some say there will be a lot of settling due to bankruptcy and poor Q1/Q2 profits, and others say it will be like the starting line at the Olympics for a 100-meter dash. Below are a few of the quotes from my conversations:

  • Most of our clients are oil and gas, especially on the West Coast in Canada. Those markets are getting hit hard right now, so I expect a lot of litigation and movement in these sectors soon, provided they make it through this and don’t go under — Litigation Support Director in Calgary, Canada (Top 5 National Law Firm)
  • When this is all done and dusted, it’s going to be like the starting line at the Olympics for a 100-meter dash. Not just with cases that have been deferred, but also over the next 12 – 24 months, much the same as what happened after the 2008 financial crisis: everyone and will want to litigate — Global Director of Forensics in UK (Top Global Service Provider)
  • A lot depends on what happens with the bailouts. There could be a lot of litigation from that. Right now, the Department of Health is busy, but as soon as they get their head above water, they will come knocking on all the Health Care Organizations out there who messed up or had someone die from COVID 19. This is going to change the way law is practiced, as well as the way lawyers litigate. We will also see a move to cyber courts — eDiscovery & information Governance Counsel in San Francisco, CA (Large west Coast Law Firm)
  • There will be a huge spike in depositions and court cases, with tons of new litigation coming out of this. It will get busier than ever — President of Data Services in Phoenix, AZ (Large Managed Document Review Provider)
  • If the economy doesn’t recover, there may be the tidal wave and bankruptcy. For the next 6 months to 1 year from now, corporations will have no budgets, so they will put off litigation, acquisitions, and mergers. There may be plenty of work but no one to pay the bills. But by the end of this year, it will get crazy busy — Director of Client Services in Los Angeles, CA (Top Global Service Provider)
  • After the delay, the firm predicts it will be ridiculously busy. There will be a lot of Force Majeure in construction as well — Director of eDiscovery in Houston, TX (Large Construction Litigation Law Firm)
  • I envision that some corporate clients will scale back due to Q1 & Q2 profits. There will be more settling, especially in aviation. SEC, DOJ, DOH will continue their work in 2020, but in 2021 everything will start to pick up again — eDiscovery Services Manager NYC (Am Law 50 Global Law Firm)
  • As an industry, we are well placed. We will benefit from the fraud, the bankruptcies, the regulation work, and the overall litigation — Partner Brisbane, Australia (Large Forensics & Cyber Security Accounting Firm)
  • We may never get back to normal. There will be a different dynamic with the way companies work, with a lot more firms working from home going forward – Litigation Support East Coast (Am Law 200 Law Firm)
  • None of us know, so I’m going to be optimistic – based on previous years, like with the 2008 financial crisis, there will be a huge amount of employment law due to furloughs and layoffs and terminations. Vendors will continue to fight like they always do, but the law firm market will face bigger challenges and may not be able to pay their bills — EVP in Los Angeles, CA (eDiscovery Service Provider)

 Some Additional Thoughts Gathered Over the Last 2 Weeks:

  • Many firms are stopping partner distributions and cutting associate (and other employee) pay anywhere from 10%-50%
  • Multiple Service Providers and eDiscovery Software companies have had layoffs attributed to COVID market conditions
  • Hiring freezes are everywhere (unless you’re Amazon)
  • Some of the smaller “very transactional” Service Providers are struggling as work has slowed
  • CAP-X spends are frozen everywhere until this is over (even if it was in the budget before, it may be pushed until things level out)
  • It is becoming widely viewed that the law firms who will survive this will be the ones who reinvent themselves and adapt the best, who make best use of all their employees for billable hours, are able to reassign labor to different areas that have the need and look at every avenue to make money and keep their clients (I believe this concept also applies for other organizations besides law firms).

Even with things currently beginning to slow, Corporations, Law Firms, and Government Agencies must prepare now for the avalanche of litigation, bankruptcy, employment disputes, sanctions, and government requests that will be coming their way in 2 to 6 months. If they wait until then, it will be too late. Which is why they need to get involved with a technology partner now, who can consult and guide them through these times and set them up for success coming out of this thing.

After 31 years in the legal technology industry, Ipro has weathered many storms, and we’re ready to partner with you to do the same now.

For more about how we can help your team prepare for what lies ahead, feel free to contact me.

NOTE – In doing these interviews, I was thanked by numerous people I spoke to for doing this, who also suggested I try do one of every few weeks, if possible, to continue keeping a pulse on our market, which we will look at doing. I would like to thank everyone I spoke with again for their time, and I hope everyone out there is staying safe and healthy.


How 3 Law Firms are Using eDiscovery Technology to Their Advantage

How law firms are using eDiscovery technology

How 3 Law Firms are Using eDiscovery Technology to Their Advantage

It’s been the same story ever since the Cartwright Power Loom or the McCormick Thresher: Technology enables the more efficient execution of the task at hand. eDiscovery is no different. There are numerous solutions out there, each designed to alleviate some particular pain point along the EDRM. But it’s not often you get to hear directly from the people on the front lines on how they’re leveraging technology to more effectively manage their legal teams’ workflow.

Here are 3 eDiscovery practitioners on how Ipro is helping them overcome those challenges.

Bare Bones to Fully Loaded

Stacie Hauza, Deputy Paralegal Administrator/Litigation Support Coordinator at Bredhoff & Kaiser, was working with older eDiscovery software, which was, “very bare bones without any analytics, and there was no way to batch documents, so we couldn’t conduct full-scale reviews.” It was clear that in order to take on the growing complexities with incoming cases, a new solution was needed.

“By adding Ipro for enterprise,” Hauza continues, “we could easily create review passes for review teams and gained the ability to process data in-house, run large-scale reviews utilizing keywords for search term reporting, as well as analytics like near-dupe, clustering, email threading, and TAR, all within a user-friendly interface.”

Not only are they able to review document collections faster, they can also manage incorrect productions from opposing counsel. Hauza recalls one case where an opposing party produced emails in PDF format without extracting any attachments. “With Ipro’s powerful processing engine, I was able to extract the attachments embedded in the PDF, giving us quick access to the full document family which should have been produced. And with Ipro’s OCR functionality in the review module, I was able to fix bad PDF production text on-the-fly after processing. We also had the ability to QC the opposing party’s work after they attempted to re-produce, where it became clear they were just reviewing and stamping in native format using Adobe. If they would have had Ipro for enterprise, their production would have been easy!

Discovery to Trial

Because so few civil cases go to trial, most legal technology focuses on document collection, processing, and review. But even if a case ultimately doesn’t end up in the courtroom, attorneys still have to prepare case strategy and potentially present evidence in mediation or arbitration. Having a solution that can carry things all the way through the process can increase efficiency a great deal.

Carey Granda, Trial & Technology Training Manager at Snell & Wilmer, says “By using Ipro, one of the biggest problems we’ve solved is time spent on task, while efficiency with case creation and productions has greatly improved from our previous document review tool. The combination of industry resources put together in a way that makes sense offers a one-stop tool for users working towards greater efficiency from eDiscovery to trial.”

Victoria Stevens, Senior Paralegal at Wilenchik & Bartness, has had similar success with technology that goes beyond traditional document review. “Collecting documents from their native source significantly reduces (and often eliminates) discovery disputes,” she says, “but Ipro can do so much more than that. She continues: “We use it to tag documents for each witness, which ultimately will be used to prepare for depositions and create affidavits with corroborating evidence for motion practice and trial presentation with Trial Director by Ipro. And the ease of using Ipro to ingest data and then have immediate access to key documents to search, tag, redact, make notes, and ultimately produce for opposing counsel has been such a time-saver — it’s a must-have tool for our attorneys and their litigation practice. Tasks that would take hours (sometimes days) now take a fraction of that time. Our clients save money, and the legal team can focus on more substantive issues and get to the heart of the case.”

A Technology Partnership

It’s no secret that lawyers aren’t technology experts, so it can be frustrating when they’re presented with software that takes a lot of time to learn. That’s why selecting an eDiscovery solution that can get users up and running quickly is important. As the Trial & Technology Training Manager at Snell & Wilmer, Carey Granda “loves hearing from users about Ipro’s intuitive interface, which provides them a DIY approach that wasn’t possible with our former product. This frees me up to handle more consultation with eDiscovery and advanced training guidance instead of teaching people how to use the software.”

And because each case has its own unique challenges, even easy-to-use technology can only take you so far. That’s where having an experienced technology partner can make all the difference.

“The Ipro Support Team is hands down the best in the business,” says Victoria Stevens, Senior Paralegal at Wilenchik & Bartness. “If you have an issue with production, they are relentless in getting it resolved, while teaching you to make your job in-house easier. Even beyond support, Ipro is a cutting-edge company with a team that listens to its clients’ needs and concerns by delivering a cost-effective, accessible approach to eDiscovery. Ipro makes my life easier. Every. Single. Day.”


For a deeper look at Ipro for enterprise and how it can help your legal team
Check out our latest product webinar!

Zoom Boom: eDiscovery Considerations Around Videoconferencing

eDiscovery and Videoconferencing

Zoom Boom: eDiscovery Considerations Around Videoconferencing
Written by Jim Gill, Content Chief, Ipro

With many of us now working from home in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the reality of using videoconferencing software like Zoom, Teams, and other such platforms has become a regular part of the day-to-day. This was already becoming a trend with a significant part of the workforce dispersed, but as early as February 3rd, Zoom CEO Eric Yuan said they were seeing record usage in response to the virus. Now with mandated shelter-in-place orders and some companies moving to a one-hundred percent remote-work model, this usage continues to grow.

So how does videoconferencing affect eDiscovery? Here are 3 Things to Consider:

Recording Laws and Jurisdictions

There are both state and federal laws in the United States around recording conversations (including electronic conversations). Most states require one-party consent, which can come from the person recording if present on the call. However, some states require that all parties to a call consent to recording. In today’s world, there are often multiple people on a call from different jurisdictions (nationally and globally), which raises additional complications.

In a white paper by Matthiesen, Wickert & Lehrer, they raise the issue of deciding on which laws apply to any given call. “Some states require the consent of all parties to the conversation, while others require only the consent of one party. It is not always clear whether federal or state law applies, and if state law applies which of the two (or more) relevant state laws controls. A good rule of thumb is that the law of the jurisdiction in which the recording device is located will apply. Some jurisdictions, however, take a different approach when addressing this issue and apply the law of the state in which the person being recorded is located. Therefore, when recording a call with parties in multiple states, it is best to comply with the strictest laws that may apply or get the consent of all parties.”

Scope and Proportionality

Under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, Rule 26 determines which Electronically Stored Information (ESI) falls within the scope of the case, and if that information is proportional to the needs of the case. In other words: what information can be requested as evidence? This also applies to video and audio files.

Two points are taken into consideration when determining scope: the information requested must be relevant to the outcome of the case, and it cannot be privileged. So when it comes to recorded video conference files, they have to meet these two guidelines to even be considered within the scope of a case.

If conference recordings fall within the scope of a case, then the courts look at the following six factors laid out in FRCP Rule 26(b)(1) to help determine rulings on proportionality.

  • The importance of the issues at stake
  • The amount of information in controversy
  • The parties’ access to the information in question
  • The parties’ resources to obtain the information
  • The importance of the discovery in resolving the issues
  • Whether the burden or expense of the proposed discovery outweighs its likely benefit

Collection, Processing, and Review of Videoconference Data

Knowing what you have before collection puts you a step ahead when starting the eDiscovery process, so work with your IT Director to document and understand all of the videoconferencing software your organization uses and how data from these programs can be extracted.

In a recent article by Gina M. Vitiello, shareholder in the Atlanta office of Chamberlain Hrdlicka, and Patrick Kennedy, director of eDiscovery at Andrews Myers, the authors remind us that it’s not just the audio and video data that is created during a videoconference, but other information and metadata is created as well.

“Most [videoconferencing apps] allow the recording to capture not only what the speakers on the call say, but any screens that are shared, side conversations that occur in the chat window and a full list of participants who have logged into the meeting.”

Another thing to understand is where the data resides after the call is over and how it is affected by company retention policies.

The article adds, “eDiscovery hinges on collecting the right electronically stored information from the right places. Those places can include such things as email boxes and network share drives from individuals who are involved in the suit. But as we have learned, eDiscovery professionals should also ask where meeting software file recordings are stored so those locations can also be included in the collection.”

As with any unique source of ESI, having a process in place ahead of litigation on how to collect and process this data for review will greatly cut down on roadblocks later.


For more on understanding how different data sources can affect your eDiscovery process
Download the Ipro Pre-Litigation Data Inventory Checklist

Ipro Pre-Litigation Data Checklist

Ipro Integral to LightSpeed Legal Success – Case Study

Ipro LightSpeed Case Study

Ipro Integral to LightSpeed Legal’s Success – Case Study

Flexible, Scalable, Powerful

Since 2006, LightSpeed Legal has provided eDiscovery, forensic, and trial services predominately to Am Law 100 firms in the US, as well as a variety of global clients. To do this successfully, they must quickly and accurately expedite the processing of large quantities of ESI and scanning of documents. As Rith Kem, Chief Strategy Officer at LightSpeed, says, “you can’t do that without the array of flexible options Ipro provides.”

He continues, “Our cases average between 100 and 200 gigabytes, but can quickly balloon to multiple terabytes. Ipro allows a strategic and nimble shop like LightSpeed to give white-glove service to all of our clients.”

Robust Analytics, Unparalleled Productions

When asked about which features specifically stand out, Rith responded, “All of the above,” going on to mention Ipro’s intricate processing features and flexibility, document batching, data reduction analytics, email threading, near dedupe, redactions, open APIs for 3rd party analytics, a robust ECA interface, on-the-fly but intricate reporting which includes access to the full metadata, and print options.

“We love that it’s not a black box,” Kem said. “Having access to the underlying database is very important. In a day and age when everything is automated, it’s easy getting data in, but a painful nightmare to have to go back and prove why things were produced the way they were. And we’ve done hundreds of productions using Ipro, and the level of quality to DOJ specifications is unparalleled.”

20 Terabytes, Multiple Languages, No Problem

In one recent case involving a government investigation into bribery charges at a Brazilian corporation, LightSpeed processed over 20 terabytes using Ipro for enterprise and loaded 15 million records into Ipro Review, hosted in LightSpeed’s own secure data center. LightSpeed brought in Portuguese speaking attorneys to begin the review process, and Ipro was selected for its user-friendly interface for review in addition to highly competitive pricing when compared to other platforms.

Analytics were also implemented at strategic points to assist in the efficiency of the review, such as running email threading and near-dupe analysis. Ipro also has a language ID feature that can identify up to 100 different languages. During the review, one reviewer said, “You can often tell when someone is discussing suspicious activity when they switch between languages.” Ipro’s ability to find these anomalies across multiple languages – in this instance, English, Spanish, and Brazilian Portuguese – played a vital role for the reviewers.

Significant Cost Reduction Over Other eDiscovery Products

With any case, strategy evolves as things move forward. Ipro’s flexibility, myriad options, and unlimited scalability have been integral to LightSpeed’s success. “Unlike a few solutions,” Rith said, “you can host Ipro on-premises, in Ipro’s cloud, or in other 3rd party clouds. This along with Ipro’s transparent pricing, allows our clients to significantly reduce costs compared to using other products.”


For a deeper look at Ipro for enterprise and how it can help your legal team
Check out our latest product webinar!

Ipro’s COVID-19 Response & Our Continued Customer Commitment

Written by Dean Brown
CEO, Ipro

The spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus) has many organizations looking for ways to protect their employees and changing the way they do business. We at Ipro are doing everything possible to protect our team members, suppliers, and clients, and to minimize disruption to your business and ours.  During this uncertain time, I wanted to communicate what Ipro is doing to protect business continuity for the software, support, and services our customers rely on, so they can focus on their employees and businesses, instead of worrying about technology.

I’m incredibly lucky to work with a talented and committed team here at Ipro.  Our workforce is flexible and adept at collaboration from any location. In response to the current unprecedented situation, Ipro has initiated several proactive programs for its employees and teams critical to your services.

  • To protect our customers, our staff, and our partners, Ipro will be closing our offices effective 3/20/2020 for the next 60 days. You should not see any disruption in our ability to support you across sales, support, training, engineering, or services.  Our Technical Support will continue 24×7.
  • Our customer support, implementation, customer success, and engineering operations teams are equipped with special and unique procedures to ensure continuity. Our business continuity plans are in place and up to date and include the infrastructure for all our employees to work from home.
  • Continuing to support customers and protecting their data is our main priority. We will continue to comply with security policies, specifically in relation to protecting all of our client data. For our Cloud customers, we will follow up with new data transfer instructions.
  • We have suspended all travel to reduce the potential impact on our teams and yours.  However, our staff are equipped with virtual communication tools to help you, whether that is a sales question, training, or managing an existing case. We encourage all our customers and partners to take advantage of these virtual tools. If you have paid for an on-site training or consulting session, we will be contacting you to either postpone or modify the session to be virtual.
  • Our Engineering teams are still moving forward as we plan for another product release for both our Enterprise and Desktop deployments. Keep an eye out for release notifications.
  • If our customers should experience any issues or concerns with their ability to serve their own clients, please don’t hesitate to reach out. Our support teams stand ready to help with any software-related questions, and our services team can jump in immediately to assist with any eDiscovery challenges.

Our firm has embraced a flexible workplace and culture, and we are well-prepared to serve you. As we continue to monitor the situation, you can be assured our dedication to our clients and our partners remains unaffected. Thank you for your trust in us, and I wish all the best for the health of you and those you care about.

Legal Operations and KPIs: Where to Start

Legal Operations and KPIs

Legal Operations and KPIs: Where to Start
Written by Jim Gill, Content Chief, Ipro

In a recent Above the Law article, Mike Quartararo, President of ACEDS, said, “You want to know why the billable hour is so entrenched and not going anywhere any time soon? It’s because it provides a direct, measurable metric or benchmark for the value of a lawyer to a law firm.” But it seems the billable hour is pretty much where it stops – for now – when it comes to KPIs. He continues, “Few, if any, firms are tracking the type of work, and none that I’m aware of are looking at the quality of the work (at least not in any systematic way).”

In parallel, tracking and measuring outside legal spend becomes the standard KPI for corporate in-house legal teams. But if this is the only metric, then the legal department will more than likely remain a cost center for the organization. They may reduce outside legal spend, possibly by using technology to cull data sent for outside review or by bringing other tasks in-house, but until a priority is put on setting clear objectives with trackable and measurable outcomes, progress will be the result of trial and error.

Alignment between Legal Ops and the Legal Department

A first step in setting KPIs for a legal ops manager is to identify all of the key practice areas (contracts, M&A, internal investigations, eDiscovery, etc.) within the organization and work with the General Counsel to establish goals for each of these areas, then create KPIs around those goals. Each organization will have different priorities and opportunities in different areas, so determining what these are up front will avoid headaches later.

Data Availability and Data Integrity

Once goals are in place, you then need to determine what data is needed in order to measure them, find out if that data already exists within the organization, and who owns the data (it may live outside of the legal department).

A few examples legal ops managers might look for:

  • E-Billing
  • Number of outside firms and service providers under contract
  • Number of matters currently underway or that took place in previous years
  • Average spend per matter
  • Common key custodians
  • Data types across the organization and processes needed to retrieve it
  • Cost per stage of the EDRM (governance, legal hold, preservation, collection, processing, review)
  • Software and other technology currently in use by the legal department and its value

After an inventory is complete, partner with data creators to evaluate any obstacles to begin tracking data against objectives.

Align KPIs with Overall Business Objectives

The legal department can be an island of sorts in the middle of a corporation. Aligning legal operations goals and KPIs with larger company-wide objectives can lead to important gains in ways that may have been overlooked at first. For example, if one of the main goals of the company is diversity and inclusion, then KPIs should be established to determine how the legal department aligns with this overall objective. This may begin with tracking the size and demographics of the legal team itself, hiring practices, wages and pay equity, along with other aspects of the legal department that are needed to benchmark against the overall business objective.


There is no denying that communication (or the lack thereof) can be an obstacle when it comes to reaching objectives. One main issue is that so many of the stakeholders involved with the legal department communicate in very different ways. Which is why it’s helpful to find a “translator” who can bridge the gap between Legal, IT, and other business units to help identify obstacles to communication that may be getting in the way of tracking KPIs. Once this is established, regular meetings or check-ins may be needed to clarify any issues between those stakeholders which may arise as a result of measuring KPIs.


Some aspects of a successful team aren’t measurable, but many of them are. First, you need to take the time to understand the departmental and organizational goals and then begin benchmarking the current state of things. Once that benchmark is established and tracking performance against that benchmark becomes standard, it may be surprising how many opportunities for improvement will become clear, or how goals may be revised based on data that was unknown until tracking began. After all, ignorance may be bliss, but knowledge is power.


Find out how Ipro empowers internal and external legal teams to effortlessly collaborate while reducing costs without sacrificing data security and defensibility.

New Ipro Webinar on How to Get the Most Out of eDiscovery Education

eDiscovery trends 2020

Law School, Certifications, and Training (Oh my!) – How to Get the Most Out of eDiscovery Education (New Webinar)

Education in eDiscovery is a mixed bag. Anytime you talk to someone in this industry, it’s always interesting to hear how they started doing the work they are doing. I’ve never heard anyone say, “Oh, I majored in eDiscovery – it was my childhood dream,” but the common thread you do find is that they were interested in the law or technology (or both), which led them to a current role at a law firm, service provider, corporation, or software company.

However they arrived, the question remains about how to continue learning the latest trends and best-practices in order to do the job. Since many people attend webinars and conferences to do just that, we here at Ipro decided to do both and host a webinar on eDiscovery education live from the annual Ipro Tech Show.

On 3/12 at 2pm EST you can hear three industry leaders, each from a different segment of the training and certification world, discuss how you can get the most out of your eDiscovery education.

Hear Michael Quartararo from ACEDS, Josh Abbott from ASU, and Krista Schmidt from Ipro talk about how technology training and certification can give you a competitive edge in your career path, as well as offer their insight into the most important best-practices you should adopt on the job.

Only one week left to Listen to the webinar On Demand now!

Ipro Announces Improved Training and Certification Guidelines

Ipro Training and Certification

Ipro is pleased to announce a new and improved process for product training and certification. Krista Schmidt, Director of Professional Services says, “Ipro’s ability to scale its training and certification programs in synchronicity with its evolving technology greatly contributes to customer confidence”

Product Certification exams are geared towards expert-level individuals who are responsible for the overall administration and workflow design in the product they are looking to certify in with both administrative and end-user functionalities.

All product exams consist of both a written and practical exam component in that order, designed to demonstrate the tester’s knowledge of both the product and workflow best practices.

Product Certification prerequisites include Advanced Product Training by the Ipro Training Department and 6 months of working experience in the product. (Hands-on practical experience in the product is critical to passing the certification exam).

  • Books and notes are NOT permitted during examination.
  • Test takers must achieve a score of 80% or higher on both the written and practical exam sections.
  • Product Certifications expire one year from the date of certification.
  • Ipro Certified Admins will be required to take a 1-hour written renewal examination within 30 days prior to the expiration of their certification.
  • Ipro Certified Admins will receive notification at the 90, 60, and 30 day mark prior to expiration.
  • Renewal examinations include a combination of original exam questions and new release questions for a total of 30.

With these new clear and concise standards, Ipro hopes to provide test takers with enhanced certification confidence, and heightened prestige.

Are you free next week and want to see the Ipro Training and Certification team in action? Come to the Ipro Tech Show! Register Now!

About Ipro
Ipro is a global leader in eDiscovery technology, drawing upon decades of innovation to deliver high-performance software, services and support bundled as a solution and deployed the way you want it – Desktop, On-prem, Cloud, or Hybrid – significantly reducing the cost and complexity of eDiscovery.